Backgammon – 3 General Techniques
July 8th, 2020 by Claudia

In very simple terms, there are 3 general tactics used. You must be able to hop between game plans almost instantly as the action of the game unfolds.

The Blockade

This comprises of creating a 6-thick wall of pieces, or at least as thick as you might achieve, to block in the opponent’s pieces that are located on your 1-point. This is considered to be the most suitable tactic at the start of the game. You can create the wall anyplace within your eleven-point and your 2-point and then move it into your home board as the game advances.

The Blitz

This is comprised of locking your home board as fast as possible while keeping your challenger on the bar. i.e., if your challenger tosses an early two and shifts one checker from your 1-point to your 3-point and you then toss a 5-5, you can play 6/1 six/one eight/three 8/3. Your opposer is now in serious difficulty considering that they have 2 pieces on the bar and you have closed half your inside board!

The Backgame

This course of action is where you have two or higher checkers in your opponent’s home board. (An anchor is a position consisting of at a minimum 2 of your pieces.) It must be used when you are extremely behind as it much improves your opportunities. The best places for anchors are towards your opponent’s lower points and either on adjoining points or with a single point separating them. Timing is essential for an effective backgame: after all, there’s no point having two nice anchors and a solid wall in your own inner board if you are then forced to break down this straight away, while your challenger is moving their pieces home, owing to the fact that you don’t have any other extra pieces to move! In this situation, it’s better to have checkers on the bar so that you are able to preserve your position up until your challenger provides you a chance to hit, so it can be a good idea to attempt and get your challenger to hit them in this situation!

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